The Week of October 7th - October 13th

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

Once-over time again? How is that even possible? Being uncharacteristically caught off guard, I am entirely unprepared to write about anything today, especially anything that will require me to tap into my creative side.

If I were looking for the easy way out, I could simply write about the most recent (and many) bludgeoning examples of the spiritual bankruptcy of mankind (gender specificity intended); however, today, I just don’t feel like acknowledging another week of boorish and inhuman behavior by a growing worldwide cesspool of miscreants and the sycophants that enable them (Rudy, is that you?).

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The Week of September 30th - October 6th

Words according to All of Us

Icebreaker questions are usually designed to be innocuous conversation starters for people who are interested in getting to know one another better or simply to avoid those uncomfortable moments of deafening silence when coming face-to-face with strangers or new acquaintances.

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The Week of September 23rd - September 29th

Words according to Dakota, SHE II, and Raven Vanguard’s third member, also known as Sloth

What oh what to talk about?

This week, I’ll start with the fact that I am quite possibly a workaholic that is in a constant struggle with responsibility. It is not that I don’t get things done, or that I am lazy, but I really do have relatively high expectations for myself and an unrealistic sense of what I should be able to push myself to accomplish. I am always pushing myself. To the point where I really should exercise restraint. You see, I have always tirelessly tried to become a Jack-of-MANY-Trades. Not a Jack of All, but many. More than just a few.

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The Week of September 16th - September 22nd

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

Today, Dakota and I partake in a cataclysmic twosome of the literary-kind.

In the lonely universe of luxury design, Raven Vanguard inherently embodies an aesthetic of mysteriousness and inscrutability that, at first observation, seems utterly inaccessible to younger generations of consumers like Millennials/Gen Yers and Generation Zers. (Technically, I am a Boomer, and Brooke and Dakota are Millennials. In the interest of openminded discourse, we defy the archetypes of our respective generations.)

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The Week of September 9th - September 15th

Words according to Dakota, SHE II, and Raven Vanguard’s third member, also known as Sloth

There is so much that could be written about the gravity of this week and the somber tone that comes along with it, year after year since 2001. All of our lives were forever changed on September 11th, even mine as a 5-year-old kid. We all know someone who worked within blocks, lived in the area, volunteered, saved lives, lost their life, knew someone who lost a loved one. We were all affected, as we watched the horrific footage on the televisions in our offices, living rooms, classrooms, gas stations, bars. We heard it on the radio. We saw it in the reflection of our parents crying, the look of horror on our teachers faces, our friends in shock and scared. I’ll never forget that day and the impact it had on me as a child. Sure, I may have only been 5, but I saw the way it affected my mom, as she watched the TV and called my dad over and over to make sure he was okay. He was flying for business that day, a simple thing he always did, yet everything was different.

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The Week of September 2nd - September 8th

Words according to Brooke, Co-Founder and Boss Lady of Raven Vanguard

Hi September, nice to see you again- you have always been my favorite. September has always represented a fresh start for me and is a month that is now extra special as Tom and I approach our first wedding anniversary. September swoops in fast and goes out even faster, if we could only hang on to it and spread it out a little longer- I’d be down with that. 

There is something to be said about getting back into a routine with September. Back in the school mindset. I’m ready to buckle down and get to work. Although summers as an adult are about work too, hmm. I’ve been looking forward to Fall, since the end of July- really. Not much into the summer heat thing. And I have to say, I think that’s the general consensus with the rest of the Ravens that Fall is our thing. One Raven in particular keeps mentioning how they like the “spookiness” of fall, I’ll let you guess which one of us that might be. But I have to agree- the “spookiness” sucks me in as well. 

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The Week of August 26th - September 1st

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

The Enigmatic Creative Universe of Raven Vanguard

Today’s Once-over purposely and enthusiastically abandons my usual looking-glass examinations of bewildering topics like God Herself, Trump, AOC, Boris and Brexit, atheists and believers, #metoo, trade wars with China, inverted yield curves, North Korea’s nuclear submarines, hashtag absurdity, truth as an afterthought, the senselessness surrounding Kashmir, plastics in our oceans, trafficked women, the pitfalls of social media, and men behaving badly with guns and bombs. Instead, today, I choose to revel in the notion and power of mysteriousness and exclusivity. Thank you, Lenny Belardo.

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The Week of August 19th - August 25th

Words according to Dakota, SHE II, and Raven Vanguard’s third member, also known as Sloth

I have been doing a lot of thinking lately. Mainly about how my generation tends to get a bad wrap for social media usage, addiction to phones, and for not living in the moment because pictures are taken of what we are doing and experiencing. We scroll and scroll. We feel like we are missing out because of that “highlight reel” effect, always seeing the positive points in others’ lives, causing us to think their life is more exciting or fulfilling.

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The Week of August 12th - August 18th

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

Today Happens to Be One of Those Opinionated Days

 

So, ready, set, duck!

We recently spent some fruitful time in Montreal, Quebec introducing the eccentricities of Raven Vanguard to the art and design communities of this oft-misunderstood Province. Montreal is always a wise choice for creatives when they are looking to hide away from the mainstream and half-assed imitators, and the flat-out absurdity of mankind in general (gender descriptor intended).

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The Week of August 5th - August 11th

Words according to Lacy, the mohawk sporting, woman-supporting, bad-ass empowerment speaker with no affiliation whatsoever to Raven Vanguard

Empowerment Through Beauty

“Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.”  Confucius 

I’m a weird bird.  I’ve always been attracted to older men, scars, and big noses.  

As I write this, I sit at a stunning, perfectly round table with swirling veneers inlaid into a design that is romantic and fierce at the same time.  I’ve always envisioned magical séances taking place around this table.  The chairs are equally as alluring to a lingering eye.  They are mesomorphic and shapely in a way that is pleasing, but not too overpowering.  They are large, but demure…  sturdy, but delicate.  

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The Week of July 29th - August 4th

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

The Grand Fallacy and Subterfuge behind Instagrammable Moments

Regrettably, we now live in a nightmarish world governed by influencers (many of whom are downright charlatans), followers (including fake followers, bots, and follower farms), likes, dislikes, favorites, sponsored content, inauthentic content, vanity metrics, algorithms, and engagement rates. What may have started as a fascinating way to disseminate original and innovative ideas and artistry many years ago, has long since evaporated as an empty promise into the ethers.

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The Week of July 22nd - July 28th

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

We dedicate this Weekly Once-over to the perceptions of Gia M and Lacy C

Does Beauty Still Matter?

I know that it used to matter to most people profoundly; at least in centuries past, it did. But does it matter now? In any form? Or to anyone? Well, that is to anyone other than Brooke, Dakota, and me. Thankfully, we also know that beauty matters very much to both Gia and Lacy. But does it matter to you, do you desire it in your life?

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The Week of July 15th - July 21st

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

When Ordinary Labels, Classifications, And Characterizations Don’t Apply

As Brooke, Dakota, and I are finally nearing completion of the redesign of our Music Room, we have been besieged by questions asking us to describe the underlying concept and design style of this multifaceted and sacred space.

Holy Mother! Where, and how, do I even begin to answer this question? Especially when we are dealing with something that, at its core, was always intended to be an inviolable, immutable, and eternal mystery, known only to us. Not only that, but I detest attempting to define something undefinable in a linguistic sense, or that which is thoroughly defying graspable explanation; so, for this reason, I mostly abstain from the very act of definition. From the exact moment of Raven Vanguard’s conception, I have made it clear to anyone willing to listen that we spurn categorization, are without common denominators, and will never resort to being derivative.

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The Week of May 13th - May 19th

Words according to Dakota, SHE II, and Raven Vanguard’s third member, also known as Sloth

Ah yes, the time has come for yet another Weekly Once-Over. What shall we discuss as the world of male political policies closes in on reproductive rights and bodily autonomy, the Raven House is coming together and is in pieces all at once, and the Earth is basically on fire according to Bill Nye?

Well - I suppose we should focus on the all out fuckery that is happening in Georgia, Alabama, Missouri, Texas, and Ohio. I started this week off on a positive note. I was just getting back from a long weekend mini-vacation in Helen, GA. I was warm and sun-tanned (kinda - I have a rather ghost like complexion) and absolutely un-bothered, not knowing that reproductive rights in several states were quickly about to be threatened - setting a very scary precedent in 2019. Do not get me wrong. These are not liberated times. It has not been all sunshine and rainbows for women of color, the LGBT community, specifically trans men and women, and low-income communities.

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The Week of May 6th - May 12th

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

Really? Time for Another Once-over?

There must be a new and undiscovered glitch in the space-time continuum because it is not possible that a full week has passed since I was last called upon to pass judgment on the persistent misgivings of humanity. Either that or my astral body is just fucking around again with my human body by attempting to lead it astray down the path adorned in Primrose to the land where vanilla is justly scorned for being mundane. 

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The Week of April 29th - May 5th

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

We are revealing today’s Weekly Once-over to you in fragments; not because we are trying to increase Site traffic, but because the week simply got away from us.

A Seasoned Witch

Forty-seven years ago this month, five extraordinarily gifted young men began creating and working in earnest in west London’s District of Sheperd’s Bush on one of, if not the greatest singular achievement in all of modern music. Nearly five months later, Yes would reveal their tour de force, Close To The Edge. This particular version of the Band consisted of Jon Anderson, Chris Squire, Bill Bruford, Steve Howe, and Rick Wakeman.

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The Week of April 22nd - April 28th

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

Today’s Once-over promises to be entirely unpremeditated, standing in stark contrast to the coldly calculated and systematic brutality carried out by those delusional Islamic jihadists against “unbelievers” in Sri Lanka this past week.

Ever since the Easter Sunday massacres in Sri Lanka, my inner monologue has been working overtime pondering the intangibles of life and existence and the fast-approaching theistic apocalypse. Today, my repressed stream of consciousness has turned into a torrential river of madness causing the dam of my mind to burst wide open in prophetic wonderment.

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The Week of April 15th - April 21st

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

Preface

I am Catholic and today is Good Friday, so you are adequately forewarned.

 

Vengeance is Mine Sayeth the Lord

Well, at least the Bible tells us so – “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath; for it is written, vengeance is mine; I will repay, sayeth the Lord.” Taken from Paul’s Epistle to the Romans 12:19-21 which is found in the sixth book of the New Testament. To me, these words have long-carried enormous significance and have acted as a personal guidepost, of sorts.

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The Week of April 8th - April 14th

Words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

My Burgeoning Distaste For the Commonplace

Yes, here I go again. Look, I am not stubbornly suggesting that every designed space in this world has to be the equal of The Palace of Versailles, that 17th Century French exaltation of art and creativity, but why, in the design sense, must modernity be so hellishly monotonous? Back in 1977, Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager must have been feeling the very same thing. Appreciating that space, in actuality, is the uniting of haven, sanctuary, and hideaway into an oasis from the gathering storm clouds of the mundane. If you ever stepped foot inside Studio 54, you know exactly what it is that I am talking about, don’t you?

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The Week of April 1st - April 7th

Introductory words according to Thomas, Co-Founder, Jack of all Trades, and Creative and Visual Director of Raven Vanguard

TRIGGER WARNING: Today’s Weekly Once-over Trigger Warning has nothing to do with the fact that it provides, courtesy of Mrs. Hungerford (yes, that one), wickedly titillating details of a Raven-approved (but, not sponsored) evening of lascivious intemperance and female-presenting nipples (take that Tumblr) in the hinterlands of suburbia (although it is just that). Rather, instead of getting straight to our contributing composer’s debauched musings, you are now forewarned of my mildly-profane diatribe, that follows, illustrating, once again, the illegitimacy and utter foolishness of embracing interior design trends or fads.

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